New Zealand-based virtual reality startup 8i has received $20 million from Samsung and other investors to enable virtual reality users to immersively engage with realistic 3D video captures, or holograms, of people. “Wellington is the perfect place to scale this company,” 8i CEO and co-founder Linc Gasking said in a statement. “There are so many world leadersRead More →

Press release: Emergent VR Raises $2.2 Million To Build The First Mobile Experience Sharing Platform San Francisco, California – Emergent VR announced it has raised $2.2 million in funding from Accel Partners, Google Ventures, and Rothenberg Ventures to build the first mobile platform for capturing and sharing moments using virtualRead More →

Cowboys and Indians captivated the country when Buffalo Bill’s Wild West rolled through America in the late 1800s and early 1900s. More than a century later, Ball State digital artists have re-created the legendary showman’s outdoor exhibition.

WeMakeVR.com and Tommy Hilfiger launch VR Runway Show Experience Hosted in select ‘Tommy Hilfiger’ stores and wholesale partners globally, consumers can watch WeMakeVR’s “Fall 2015 ‘Hilfiger Collection’ VR experience” from a VIP seat in 360 degree 3D virtual reality – and then immediately shop the collection. AMSTERDAM, THE NETHERLANDS – WeMakeVRRead More →

The New York Times announced the launch of NYT VR and the distribution of more than one million Google Cardboard viewers to home delivery subscribers with their copy of The New York Times the weekend of November 7 and 8.

Argentina-based Voxelus has announced that it is working on a virtual reality game creation tool, viewer, virtual world currency, and virtual content marketplace. Voxelus co-founder and CEO Martin Repetto told Hypergrid Business that the new platform will be released in the first quarter of 2016 will work on as many virtual reality devices inRead More →

AvaCon announced the third annual OpenSimulator Community Conference 2015, to take place virtually on the OpenSimulator Conference Center grid on December 5, 2015. The OpenSimulator Community Conference is an annual conference that focuses on the developer and user community surrounding the OpenSimulator software. Organized as a joint production by Core DevelopersRead More →

The casino-themed YrGrid, also known for its Bitcoin-based currency, announced today that it has opened its doors to the wider metaverse by granting hypergrid access to around forty other virtual worlds. Those grids include 3rd Rock Grid, AviWorlds, DigiWorldz, Dorena’s World, Dreamscape, Great Canadian Grid, Japan Open Grid, Kitely, Littlefield, Lost Paradise,Read More →

Like a lot of people, I do a fair bit of shopping online. Amazon, eBay, Staples, Best Buy — I know them well, plus dozens of other online retailers as well. Until this fall, however, I’ve never considered shopping at AliExpress. I’d never heard of the site before, and ifRead More →

The Kitely Merchant Fair starts tomorrow with freebies, events, and more at the Kitely Hypergrid Merchant Fair region on Kitely. Teleport via hypergrid to grid.kitely.com:8002:Kitely Hypergrid Merchant Fair.

Starting October 9 on the Japan Open Grid, the Planet Treasure Hunt, which is apart of the Bunkasai Festival, begins. The Planet Treasure hunt is a scavenger hunt for solar systems scattered around the school region. The objective is to collect eight planets hidden around the school to win a prize. TheRead More →

Moscow-based Fibrum Ltd., known for its excellent virtual reality apps, has put Russia in the lead in the virtual reality hardware race — temporarily, at least — by getting its headset into retail chains this summer According to company spokesman Alexey Svirskiy, the company was founded just a year and aRead More →

Epic Games has released a new video, Sense of Presence, that tries to explain why virtual reality is so compelling and inevitable. The video, which is the first episode of a series that will seek to explore the power of virtual reality, features renowned experts Palmer Luckey, the founder Oculus Rift; KimRead More →

It’s been another record-breaking month for OpenSim, with new heights reached in land area, registered users, and active users. OSgrid, Kitely and DigiWorldz were the biggest gainers in land area, with 678, 340 and 255 regions added, respectively. There are now the equivalent of 68,941 standard regions on OpenSim’s 302Read More →

San Antonio, Texas-based Merge VR has announced that it’s purple virtual reality goggles, made out of soft foam, will be available at 320 UK retail outlets in time for the holidays. The Google Cardboard-compatible goggles will be available in the U.K. for £49.99 exclusively from GAME, the country’s leading games retailer.Read More →

The Google Cardboard virtual reality application has been installed 15 million times, Google said in an announcement yesterday. The app, typically one of the first installed when a customer buys a smartphone-based virtual reality headset, is available for download from the Google Play store for Android phones and from Apple’s AppRead More →

Impression Pi, a headset that combines virtual and augmented reality with gesture recognition, announced this month that it received $5.5 million in funding in addition to its successful $300,000 Kickstarter earlier this year. The company has also said it will be announcing release dates this month. “Being able to attract suchRead More →

SlotsMillion, an online casino company, has released a virtual reality app for the Oculus Rift and announced that it is giving away ten Oculus Rift headsets to players. For every 100 Euro bet, players get one additional chance to win a new headset. There are currently 40 casino games available inRead More →

Tangle Grid‘s Halloween Expo opened for business today and will run through November 15. But the grid is still accepting exhibitors. “We are looking for creators that would like to show their creation in this theme or just drop a few items down to give people something to look at,”Read More →

The Las Vegas-themed Neon Grid is having a grand-opening party tonight at 8 p.m. Pacific at the Landing Strip Club on its Welcome Center region. The grid is among the few — possibly, the only– commercial grid that uses PayPal for games and shopping via the PayPal money module. During theRead More →

The OpenSim community has come together for a user-focused event next month, AvatarFest 2015. The event will run from November 13 through 16, with the exhibit and performance submission deadline on November 7. See the AvatarFest calendar for more details. Community members were inspired to hold the event by the factRead More →

Starship, the UK-based innovation studio, unveiled a first glimpse of mobile social virtual reality network, vTime, with the release of a new video and screenshots. Set for launch in November, vTime offers friends and family a compelling new way to spend quality time together in virtual reality.

There’s been a recent trend with real estate companies to create virtual walk-throughs of properties for prospective customers. But one company, eXp Realty, has taken this a step further and actually has its offices in a virtual environment. “We don’t have any physical bricks-and-mortar office of any significance, other than toRead More →

You only know what you can remember, as the saying goes, but virtual reality technology holds the potential to reorganize and adulterate a person’s memory, blurring the lines between what is real and what is virtual. Our strongest memories are deeply ingrained based on events and experiences that activate theRead More →

Sierra Club, America’s largest grassroots environmental organization, and virtual reality production studio RYOT today announced the release of the world’s first virtual reality climate change public service announcement. The video, which is being released just two months shy of the international climate negotiations in Paris, aims to not only highlight theRead More →

Immersive storytelling takes center stage at first-ever annual event featuring innovators from across the virtual reality landscape, including, HTC, Google, USA TODAY, The Washington Post, The Wall Street Journal and Framestore on October 23.

This Christmas shopping season promises to be a good one for virtual reality, with a $30 View-Master virtual reality headset hitting the market just about now. This is brightly-colored headset from Mattel that is fully compatible with the Google Cardboard standard and can play any of the hundreds of theRead More →

Press release: Wargaming Unveils its First Virtual Reality Tank Battle Reenactment Wargaming released 1941 Battle: 360° Reenactment, a unique 360° virtual reality video that teleports the viewer into the heart of battle with four tanks, 40 infantry reenactors, artillery and warplanes for the first time ever. “Wargaming is excited to share ourRead More →

Immersive experiences are transforming the way in which media companies present their content — movies, TV broadcasts, and films. These experiences can help the content producers reach new audiences and increase engagement with existing viewers. The following are six new examples of the media using virtual reality. 1. Netflix releases Gear VR app; Hulu and TwitchRead More →

CNN has teamed up with virtual reality video company NextVR to stream October 13’s US Democratic presidential primary debate in virtual reality, the world’s first live stream of a news event in this new medium. CNN has always tried to bring the audience as close to the action as possible,Read More →

Trying to find new virtual reality apps? Check out WearVR, which catalogs nearly 1,000 virtual reality applications for all major platforms. Apps can be sorted by newest, highest rated and most popular, and can also be filtered by device, platform, and genre. The site also has a section of virtualRead More →

Press release: Virtual Reality Adoption in Enterprise and Industrial Markets Will Be Driven by Training, Simulation, Virtual Prototyping, and 3D Modeling Applications According to a new report from Tractica, commercial sector revenue from virtual reality headsets, other virtual reality equipment, virtual reality content, and content creation tools will reach nearlyRead More →

When it comes to funding virtual reality startups, venture capitalists are looking for passion — and working prototypes. Others were more narrowly focused, looking for enterprise applications, they told virtual reality entrepreneurs at the 2015 VRLA Summer Expo. The panel of investors, which included representatives from Cooley LLP, CrossCut Ventures Management LLC,Read More →

Three virtual reality hardware products were the focus of attention at the Oculus Connect 2 conference in Hollywood last week. The products included the Gear VR headset, produced in partnership with Samsung, a new Touch control device, and the consumer version of the Oculus Rift headset itself, scheduled for 2016 product release. And,Read More →

If you don’t have your hands on a Google Cardboard headset yet, you might be able to get one from Air New Zealand if you hurry. The company is giving away 1,000 headsets so that people can try out its virtual reality app for Android devices and for iPhones. It’sRead More →

Virtual reality cameras cost hundreds — or thousands — of dollars. But Shot, a startup based in Spain, hopes to bring the price down to under $100 with a new Kickstarter campaign by combining fisheye lenses and some clever software. The way it works is that you clip the lenses toRead More →

The Adult Metaverse community on Google Plus has just crossed the 1,000 member mark. With 135 new members since the start of August, it is the fastest-growing OpenSim-specific community on the platform. DigiWorldz was in second place by growth, with 89 new members bringing it to a total count ofRead More →

With around 2 million Google Cardboard devices already in user hands, and Taobao and AliBaba alone selling 300,000 additional units a month, mobile-based virtual reality is going gangbusters. The iOS app store and Google Play have hundreds of virtual reality apps. Microsoft’s app store has less than two dozen. So,Read More →

Press release: New open source platform turns iOS, Android devices into Vr controllers Navi is an app that transforms your smartphone or tablet into a controller by sending your device’s rotations and touch gestures to your virtual reality headset. Developed in Unity, Navi is designed to be easy to use, flexible to developRead More →

Picture by Floorplan Revolution VR

This past week, Atlanta-based Trick 3D announced an application that will allow architects, home builders, real estate marketers and developers to generate 3D virtual environments using just 2D floor plans. The Floorplan Revolution app will also allow their clients to experience photo-realistic walkthroughs of those environments using Samsung Gear VR and Google Cardboard headsets. The softwareRead More →

Yes, virtual reality technology will turn us all into drooling idiots and destroy civilization — but it won’t be the first. Here are ten other technologies that have already destroyed civilization. 10. The Internet The Internet is more addictive than cocaine. Back in 1995, fewer than 15 percent of Americans usedRead More →

I just got my Samsung Gear VR a couple of weeks ago and have been testing it out. It’s a nice headset, light, wide field of view, but I sent it back today for a refund. I will probably get the updated version once it comes out in November, since itRead More →

Virtual reality technology is on fire and definitely a stimulating field to be in these days, with areas such as computer animation, software engineering and virtual reality design in demand and thriving. A career in one of these fields could be highly rewarding, but is not for everyone. Take it forRead More →

The third annual Summer of Arts 2015 virtual arts event begins on September 25. Metropolis Grid hosts this event to give cyber artists an opportunity to display their works to a wide audience. The art displayed ranges from audio-visual installations and theater projects to paintings and cyberart objects. A specialRead More →

According to a report released earlier this month by Shanghai-based Interface News, China’s two leading online commerce platform,  Taobao and AliBaba, together sell more than 300,000 virtual reality headsets every month, with lower-cost headsets accounting for the bulk of the sales. The report does not include direct sales from theRead More →

InWorldz and Avination — two of OpenSim’s biggest and oldest commercial grids — have just made extremely large code donations to the OpenSim community. OpenSim server code is distributed under the BSD license. This means that people can make changes to it and keep those changes proprietary. At one point, for example,Read More →

Bright Canopy, the browser-based streaming access service for Second Life and OpenSim, is coming back on Wednesday after a three-week outage. The service launched at the end of August to great reviews but was hit by a sharp spike in the price of cloud computing services. It was offering users all-you-can-eatRead More →

Want to attend the TechCrunch Disrupt conference but can’t make it in person? Being there in virtual reality might be the next best thing. Today, YouVisit is livestreaming the conference via its free virtual reality app, available for iPhone, and Android platforms, as well as online through traditional 360-degree video thatRead More →

Tangle Grid’s 2015 Steam Expo has been drawing both local residents and hypergrid visitors, grid owner grid owner Leslie Kling told Hypergrid Business. And each event seems to draw more and more people, she added, as word gets out. The Steam Expo and the Fashion Expo are the most popular sheRead More →

I have tried on my share of headsets. The Oculus Rift development kits. The various Google Cardboards and the higher-end smartphone-based headsets. The Fove. Let me just say that even if I didn’t know that I was wearing a headset, I’d instantly know that I was looking at virtual reality,Read More →

Press release: 23 million America adults already experimenting with virtual reality according to new study NEW YORK — As the technology world braces for major virtual reality product releases, many millions of Americans have already experienced the technology, according to a new study released today. According to YouVisit’s Virtual RealityRead More →

Beloola, a browser-based social virtual world, plans to leverage new developments in Chrome and Firefox to support virtual reality headsets. It is a room-based world, where every user gets a free room to start with. Travel between rooms is via menu-based or portal-based teleports. This is different from Second LifeRead More →

AviWorlds now has a Facebook app that allows people to take pictures in-world and post them to Facebook. Many other grids have Facebook pages, but the only other commercial grids with Facebook apps are Island Oasis, which launched theirs late last year, and Kitely, which has had one since 2011. SecondRead More →

Virtual city recreation project Digital Lisbon, currently a part of the AviWorlds grid, has launched a crowd-funding campaign on IndieGoGo to set up its own, dedicated world. Founder Carlos Loff is looking to raise $2,000, which will cover half a year of hosting and provide money for events and content. LoffRead More →

OpenSim grids saw continued steady growth this month, with total region counts, user numbers, and monthly actives all reaching new record highs. There are now the equivalent of 65,122 standard regions on OpenSim’s 317 active public grids, a new record high. There are also 478,497 registered users and 31,567 active users, anRead More →

I’ve written before about what an amazing service AOL did in getting people to go online for the first time. They spent more than $300 million on all those disks. They were at checkout counters. They came in the mail. They were in cereal boxes. They were everywhere. As aRead More →

Pirate’s Atoll announced today that the grid is moving to DigiWorldz. The Atoll has been a small, hypergrid-enabled standalone minigrid hosted with Oliveira Virtual Lands. Grid owner John Simmons, also known as Strannik Zipper in-world, said that he decided to move the grid to be closer to DigiWorldz’ music scene, to take advantageRead More →

Mini USA, the company behind the iconic Mini Cooper, has just jumped on the free Google Cardboard bandwagon. They’re following in the footsteps of several other companies that have been giving away virtual reality headsets lately, including Volvo, cell phone manufacturers LG and OnePlus, the HomeLane furniture store, a pornRead More →

DigiWorldz has announced a referral and affiliate program for residents, bloggers, and anyone else who would like to bring new users to the grid and earn a commission on all future land payments. This is not a one-time payment, grid founder Terry Ford told Hypergrid Business. Whenever a new userRead More →

Virtual reality is a fast-changing field, and is about to explode. Stay on top of the news by subscribing to the top blogs on the subject. The page authority numbers are from Open Site Explorer and are estimates of how the site does in search results — the higher the number,Read More →

On Saturday night, Mal Burns joked that virtual reality headsets are now like the AOL disks — they’re everywhere. All we need now is to see them in cereal boxes. With prices of $5 or less for Google Cardboard sets — $1 or less if you buy them in bulk —Read More →

My Freefly VR headset came in the mail a couple of days ago — I ordered it from Amazon exactly a week earlier. Bottom line: this is a great headset, and I’m looking forward to comparing it with the Samsung Gear VR, which is being shipped to me as I writeRead More →

It’s a law of economics that, over time and with perfect competition, the price of a product tends to approach the marginal cost of the product — that is, how much it costs to make one more item. The marginal cost of a virtual good is just about as closeRead More →

The DigiWorldz grid has rolled out a new viewer for its residents, based on the Alchemy Viewer, and included Qarl’s mesh deformer functionality. The mesh deformer is a crowd-funded project that successfully raised more than $5,000 from users in Second Life and OpenSim on Indiegogo in 2011. In 2013, InWorldz hired formerRead More →

Dahlia Trimble, an OpenSim core developer who’s been with the project since the summer of 2008, announced today that she is leaving. “I am sad to announce that I will be leaving OpenSimulator Core,” she told fellow developers. “I’ve been finding lately that I no longer have a use forRead More →

Press release: OSVR Confirms Pre-order Date for Hacker Development Kit; Launches Content Discovery Platform Software platform reveals 65 new supporting companies including Legendary VR and NVIDIA’s Gameworks VR BERLIN – Organizers of Open Source Virtual Reality (OSVR), an open software and hardware platform for virtual reality, today announced development ofRead More →

Update 2: The community meeting transcript is here, and the Bright Canopy service will probably be coming back only for a limited number of users until the Amazon price fluctuations are dealt with. Update: The company will hold a community meeting Saturday morning in Second Life to answer user questions.Read More →

The world’s first full-length feature film to be shot completely in 360 degrees, “Career Opportunities in Organized Crime,” has begun filming in Baltimore. A documentary-style comedy about the Russian mafia, the movie is helmed by first-time director Alexander Oshmyansky, and features mostly unknown actors. The movie is scheduled to be released next year.Read More →

Although the first consumer version of the Oculus Rift virtual reality headset is not scheduled to be released until the first quarter of 2016, some Hypergrid Business readers have shelled out for one of the preview developer kits — or know someone who has. If you’re one of these lucky people, here are sevenRead More →

Press release: ReelTime Revolutionizes Virtual Reality – Launches ReelTime VR Mobile App Worldwide Featuring Megs McLean SPRING HILL, FL — ReelTime announces the release of the ReelTime VR app and production suite, and a virtual reality film of country artist Megs McLean. ReelTime VR is available as a free app for iPhone, Android, and BlackberryRead More →

Technology altering the way companies conduct business is nothing new. From devices like iPads, to the use of social media as a marketing tool, advances in technology have made running businesses more efficient. Now there is another emerging technology that is delivering promising results in every industry that’s tested it—virtualRead More →

It’s been a good-news, bad-news summer for Virwox, the European virtual currency exchange that used to dominate third-party Linden Dollar trading. On August 1, all third party Linden Dollar trading officially came to an end. And, before that, the Avination grid cut off its ties with Virwox, and warned users not to trade theRead More →

Storytelling is a valuable form of human expression that has been around since the very ancient times. Story itself is essential to so many art forms, and theater is one of them. We have written before about how virtual reality could be applied to journalism and immersive storytelling. Theatrical “storytellers” are yetRead More →

Press release: Scienverse creates virtual reality world that combines VR apps and social network; Kickstarter campaign starts in 2 weeks THE HAGUE – Scienverse officially announces its project of creating a virtual reality world built with Unreal Engine 4 that provides a platform for third-party virtual reality applications combined with a nextRead More →

Editor’s Note: AviWorlds, an OpenSim-based virtual world, launched a sister hosting company in late June, Avi-Labs. At Hypergrid Business, we’ve been hesitant to recommend it because it had no track record and no customers, and its parent company has a long and turbulent history of instability. Today, however, we have aRead More →

Kitely, the largest commercial OpenSim grid, has rolled out a new region monitoring tool for its users, and published a new guide for detecting and fixing world performance problems. The grid has also added a Web-based option to manually stop a running world, the grid announced earlier this week. “As aRead More →

  When Zumba burst on to the scene in the early 2000s, it dramatically changed fitness in America. The company cemented its place as a juggernaut within its industry through innovative practices, and its founders haven’t lost that sense of innovation. Today, the company is exploring how to keep theRead More →

Bright Canopy will come out of invitation-only pre-release phase on August 29 and will make its Second Life cloud-based streaming service available globally for $17 a month. The Texas-based company allows users of the globally popular virtual world Second Life the means to enjoy it without the need to invest in high-end gamingRead More →

Despite the August heat — at least, here in the northern hemisphere — total region counts, user numbers, and monthly actives were all up in OpenSim. Or perhaps it was because of the heat, as people opted to stay inside, at their computers, in the air conditioning. There are nowRead More →

The Kitely Market hit another milestone this month, with a new total of 10,162 different item listings grouped into 5,030 different products. This is up from 9,971 different listings a month ago. Of the listings, 6,080 are exportable, or 60 percent. Kitely groups items together, so that, say, a red versionRead More →

As my regular readers know, I’ve been trying to use a smartphone-and-Cardboard combo as an Oculus Rift replacement so that I could walk around my OpenSim builds without having to shell out $350 for the Oculus development kit. It’s not that I’m cheap — okay, yes, I’m cheap — butRead More →

Restaurant owners looking for an edge in a crowded market and hungry diners that would like more, or better detailed information about eateries now have a virtual reality option. Recently, YouVisit launched YouVisit Restaurants as a free app for the Samsung Gear VR headset. The app allows anyone with aRead More →

For many years, former IBMer Justin Clark-Casey has been the eternally-youthful face of OpenSimulator development and the president of the Overte Foundation which oversees OpenSim licensing issues. Then, on Sunday, the Justin Era ended with a post on his blog, Everything that has a beginning has an end, in which he saidRead More →

There are many reasons why a region might be slow to load, but one of the hardest to address has been that of slow scripts. OpenSim doesn’t make it easy to discover which particular scripts are contributing the most to lag — but that is about to change. Kitely hasRead More →

Press release: 3rd Rock Grid to transition to Podex 3rd Rock Grid is going through a number of changes as part of a transition to a new ownership model. One of the changes will be to transition away from directly managing their currency, the Geode, otherwise known as the GO$.Read More →

Update: In August, I bought a FiiT VR 2S, and that is now my new favorite. Another headset I’m recommending is the BoboVR Z4 headset, which has a 120-degree field of view, built-in headphones, and a built-in control button. A new virtual reality headset came in the mail for me today, the C1-Glass fromRead More →

Most people who’ve traveled the hypergrid have had the experience of not being able to bring stuff back home, or of mysteriously not being able to take content to other grids. Recently, a number of different OpenSim developers have taken on the fight, and have been reporting progress. Crista LopesRead More →

I’ve never sat through an entire presentation dedicated to the launch of a new phone before, and I probably never will again. But the OnePlus 2 launch last night, from Chinese firm OnePlus, was an unusually compelling and intimate experience. Presented completely in virtual reality — or, for those withoutRead More →

Combined revenue for head mounted displays, and virtual reality accessories and content will increase from $108.8 million in 2014 to $21.8 billion worldwide by 2020, with a compound annual growth rate of 142 percent, according to a new report from Tractica. “Getting users to experience virtual reality technology firsthand, and therefore trulyRead More →

The Immersive Education Initiative today announced the official IMMERSION 2015 speakers, exhibits, presentations, and workshops. Featuring nearly 100 sessions about virtual reality, augmented reality, 3D printing, wearable computing, brain interfaces, and more, IMMERSION 2015 is open to the public from 7 September to 10 September. Day passes  are available forRead More →

LOS ANGELES, Calif. – Nokia today announced OZO, the first commercially available virtual reality  camera designed and built for professional content creators and the first in a planned portfolio of digital media solutions from Nokia Technologies, the company’s advanced technology and licensing business. “We’re thrilled to introduce OZO to theRead More →

BRIGHTON, ENGLAND – Epic Games, in collaboration with the Wellcome Trust, a biomedical research charity based in London, has concluded the Big Data VR Challenge, awarding $20,000 to LumaPie. This international team created a VR visualization of study results of environmental and genetic factors that have shaped the development theRead More →